Pennsylvania officially orders recount in GOP Senate primary

Pennsylvania’s Senate GOP primary is officially heading to a recount as celebrity surgeon Mehmet Oz and former hedge fund manager Dave McCormick remain neck and neck. 

Pennsylvania acting Secretary of State Leigh Chapman officially announced the recall Wednesday afternoon as tallies show Oz and McCormick separated by 902 votes, or 0.1 percentage points. Under state law, a recount is triggered if two candidates are separated by 0.5 percentage points or fewer. 

Counties will be allowed to begin their recount on Friday, but they can start no later than Wednesday, June 1. The recount should be finished by June 7, with results due the day after.

The announcement, which has been expected since last week, comes amid an increasingly tense back-and-forth between McCormick and Oz. 

McCormick’s campaign is suing to have counted ballots that were mailed in without a written date on the envelopes, as is typically required, but that were received on or before Election Day. Oz is arguing for the ballots to be rejected and is getting backup from the state GOP and the Republican National Committee. 

The litigation was forecast Friday when a circuit court ruled that mail-in ballots without a date but received by Election Day had to be counted in a 2021 judgeship election. 

McCormick currently has an edge against Oz on such ballots, and his campaign likely believes that counting them could narrow the gap. 

Chapman said Wednesday that there are 860 Republican ballots without dated envelopes, a tally accumulated from 65 of the 67 counties that have reported their results thus far. Pennsylvania counties are still counting nearly 10,000 ballots that were cast from overseas, from military members or from other absentee avenues, though the partisan breakdown of those votes is unclear. 

The ultimate nominee will face off in November against Lt. Gov. John Fetterman (D), who is currently recovering from a stroke.

Tags Dave McCormick Donald Trump John Fetterman Mehmet Oz Mehmet Oz Pennsylvania Senate race

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